The terrible deed was done. They had mocked him as if he were a fool. They threw back his words at him as if they were meaningless. They beat his body until it was a bloody mass of mangled flesh. His body craved release from thirst, but none was provided until they had hanged him upon the cross.

Sour vinegar with Myrrh? Even the offered drink was contemptible.

His hands and feet were pierced with nails—firmly fastening him to a cross. After six hours of untold agony he gave up his spirit.

Joseph of Arimathea and Nicodemus recovered his body. After hastily washing it, they placed approximately 75 pounds of a costly mixture of myrrh and aloes on it and then wrapped his body in a linen-cloths. They placed the body in the new unused tomb of Joseph which was nearby. The stone blocking entrance or exit was rolled into position. The Romans sealed the tomb and placed guards on duty to secure it from the disciples.

It seemed that the disciples’ dreams of glory and a kingdom were over. Their Messiah was dead and buried. Their hopes smashed. Confusion, deep sadness and grief gripped their troubled souls. How could this be?

But Evil’s wicked pleasure didn’t know that Sunday was coming. Hadn’t Jesus exclaimed, “Therefore My Father loves Me, because I lay down My life that I may take it again. 18 No one takes it from Me, but I lay it down of Myself. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again.” No power in heaven, hell or on earth could keep Jesus in the tomb. God’s eternal purpose before the foundations of the world were laid were coming to pass in the death, burial and resurrection of the Messiah.

The good news? He is risen! The world is forever changed. The destiny of God’s people—secured. Righteousness overpowered sin and conquered it. The grave is empty. Death no longer has dominion over mankind. Charles Bishop